Palmers are happy to announce their commitment to adopt Ahren, and love him all the way home from China. They hope you’ll consider partnering with them in their efforts to complete the lengthy and expensive process of international adoption to bring him home! Ahren has a cleft palate and will need surgery shortly after coming home.
Jordan and Melissa have been married 12 years and have 2 daughters 6 and 4 years old. The girls are so beyond excited to have a little brother, they carry his picture around the house with them as they play and eat.
The Palmers believe that adoption was part of God’s plan for their family, leading them to Ahren and having no doubt that he is their son.
Palmers ask for prayer during their adoption journey and hope to bring Ahren home spring/summer 2016.
Isaiah 40:31 Those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.
9/24/15— HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
We are Sam and Stacie Morgan. Sam is a US Army helicopter pilot and I am a stay-at-home mommy We have a 20 year old daughter, a 9 year old daughter, a 5 year old son (adopted from China in 2014), a 3 year old son (adopted from China in 2013) and our waiting son who is almost 13 (in China). We have always had a heart for the aging out children and as soon as we saw “Gene’s” face we knew he was ours. We can’t wait to bring him home.
9/24/15—HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
After more than a year and a half of waiting, praying, and hoping, the Songer family has finally been matched with a precious little girl on the other side of the world who needs a loving family. The road that lead Chris and Katie Songer to this precious child has been long, and yet they can see now how every step has brought them to exactly where they needed to be.
Chris and Katie always felt called to adopt. They discussed their shared passion for adoption early in their relationship, and through eleven years of marriage and the birth of two beautiful biological sons (now ages 9 and 7), their desire to grow their family through adoption has never wavered. Chris’s father was adopted as a baby, so he has seen first hand how life giving and life changing adoption can be. Katie has a masters degree in special education, so the possibility of adopting a child with special needs has often stirred her heart. Several years ago, the Songers felt that the timing was right, so they began the home study process. They were originally pursuing a domestic adoption, but after waiting for over a year for a placement, they began to pray about international adoption. It was at that time that several friends who were active in the adoption community forwarded the Songers a posting they had seen about a three and a half year old child with special needs in Uganda. After learning more about the little girl from her agency here in the United States, the Songers knew with absolute certainty that despite the obstacles of converting their home study and raising the additional funds required for an international adoption, this was the child they were being called to pursue. They have an amazing network of family and friends, many of whom have adopted from Uganda. These people are committed to providing a community of support for the entire family throughout this process and beyond. The Songers are currently taking every step they can take in order to become this little one’s family. They are researching her medical needs, consulting with doctors and fellow adoptive parents, and completing an encyclopedia’s worth of paperwork for the dossier. They are also asking everyone they know to help them pray her home.
The story that God tells through adoption is so much bigger than one family. This child was being pursued by her loving creator long before the Songers ever knew her name. They are trusting that God will continue to go before them on behalf of their little girl, and that He will invite others to partner with them on this journey through prayers, finances, and emotional support. They are excited to watch God’s story unfold, and long for the day that they can hold their little girl in their arms and tell her how very loved she is.
9/23/15— HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
Meet Saam. He is one of a group of seven older boys who were friends from the same welfare center. He’s watched as six of his friends over the past several years were adopted one-by-one, and has been waiting patiently for his own forever family…until now!
This past year, we (Laura and Brandon) watched as Laura’s brother and his wife adopted two of Saam’s teenage friends from his Chinese orphanage. When they started advocating for Saam, the last boy left, and mentioned that they wanted to find someone like us to adopt him something sparked in our hearts, and we began to pray. Our prayer was for Saam to find his forever family, and if it was to be us, that God would let us know. There were a few challenges to overcome, but prayers took care of those, and soon enough, we found ourselves starting the paperwork to begin the adoption process. That means that these three friends, Saam and our newly adopted nephews from the same welfare center, will be cousins and live across town from each other!
Our three biological children are on-board and excited about the process. Saam’s sister Hayley even started telling people that we were adopting before we had made the final decision. In many ways, our children, and their cousins, were the catalysts for adopting Saam. The love these kids have for others and each other is inspiring to the adults in this family. In addition to being excited about having a new brother, our kid’s each have opinions about what English name to give Saam. Much to their dismay ‘Bruce Wayne’, even though we love Batman, has been vetoed. Fun discussions continue as to what Saam’s name should be as we journey through the paperwork and adoption process in this upcoming year and pray as a family for his safety and wellbeing until we can travel to make him ‘ours’.
Adoption was not in our original plans for our life, but God knew it was in our hearts. Seeing the impact it had on other families who have adopted touched us in ways we never imagined. One of the scariest parts of this process for us is finances, but God put this opportunity in front of us, and even though we don’t have the money saved to pay for this adoption, we know we have to take a step of faith knowing know that God will provide. Please consider helping to bring Saam home to his forever family. Our entire family truly appreciates your help and prayers and can’t wait to reunite three friends who will now be cousins, and welcome him home as a son and
9/2/15— HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Marty and Mandy met in high school, dated for 2 years and were married at 18 years old. Many people said it wouldn’t last, but with God all things are possible. 15 years later, the couple has 5 children. Eli is their oldest, biological son. He is 12 years old and loves to play soccer. He is a great big brother and is the hero that the others look up to. Joseph Ivaylo is next in line at 10 years old. Vaylo is his Bulgarian name and the family kept on calling him that when he joined them 3 years ago. Vaylo came home weighing 22 pounds at 7 years old. He was unable to walk, had no form of communication and basically, existed in his own little world. Today, he is the light of his family. He weighs a whopping 45 pounds and not only walks, but runs and dances, too. His favorite dance partner is Julie. Julie is Marty and Mandy’s only biological daughter and is just five days younger than Vaylo. Julie is a competitive gymnast and loves that the family lives on a farm, where she can be surrounded by animals. She is a wonderful sister and loving example of who Jesus is to her siblings. Fourth in line is Samuel Dimitar. Sam came home at the same time as Vaylo and is 7 years old. Sam is the life of this party and often people have told the family that he needs his own TV show. He has a wonderful sense of humor and keeps everyone guessing about what’s coming next. Sam was a little sad when he first came home, because he left behind, a little girl, named Klementina at the orphanage in Bulgaria. He wasn’t sad, for long, though, because with God ALL things are possible. Today, Klemi is Sam’s sister and the two are separated by only three weeks in age. Klemi came home, just 15 months after Sam and Vaylo and like her brothers, she, also, has Down Syndrome. It has been amazing for the family to witness God’s hand in bringing their children home from across the ocean.
Marty and Mandy knew it was time to go, again. Klemi is their most recent child home and she just celebrated her 2nd “Gotcha Day.” After talking and praying for nearly a year about their next child, they had decided to look for a boy, over four years old, most likely with Down Syndrome. Well, Marty scrolled across the face of “Curtis” here on Reece’s Rainbow and even though they thought “no more babies,” God seems to have other plans. Curtis is a beautiful one year old boy with Down Syndrome. Marty saw his picture and knew he was their son. So, here we are. Once, again, the Rhodes Family is saying, “Yes!” Yes to whatever God asks. Yes to a new son. The family needs your help to move the mountain of money that stands between them and their newest, little one. Will you join them on this journey?
Pray, Adopt, Advocate, Support…Do Something! For the King and His Glory…
9/2/15— HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at gatheringrhodes.wordpress.com
Tasha had always assumed that when she and Jeff adopted, it would be in birth order. In her mind, the way you add to the family is with a baby. Over the last year she had actively advocated for waiting children and knew in her heart that one day her family would bring one of those children home. She had felt compelled to adopt, but Jeff had never agreed. Tasha prayed for over a year that when the time was right and the child was right, Jeff would say yes. She would wait.
In March of 2015, Tasha reviewed Erika’s file, like she had many files, and began to occasionally advocate for her on facebook. She reviewed the file again toward the end of May, and even called the placing agency for more information. She asked why no one had adopted Erika, considering she had such large grants. The answer: because she has Down Syndrome. Tasha has a heart for people with Down Syndrome and that answer felt personal and offensive. Still…
A few days later, the agency rep emailed to ask if the family was interested in adopting Erika. Tasha replied that she would talk to her husband over the weekend, and then she promptly put the file in a desk drawer and closed it.
On July 7th, Tasha saw another post on facebook advocating for Erika, and it hit her like a sucker punch. As the morning continued on, God really convicted Tasha’s heart. Why should she reject a waiting child based on her age? What made her think that she got to choose who her child was? Waiting children were not shoes to be shopped for. It was a very hard and humbling day.
Reluctantly, Tasha decided that she would take Erika’s file out of the drawer and show it to Jeff when he got home that night, and when she did he said, “Okay….I’ll think about it.”
Jeff has always cared about orphans. But the idea of actually…in real life…adopting??? They didn’t have the money. Their house needed repairs. They had just gotten out of the diaper phase after 10 years and 4 kids. Kids with Down Syndrome and the health concerns involved were kind of scary.
Jeff had never said he “would think about it” before. That is such a simple sentence, but it spoke volumes. AND IT FREAKED TASHA OUT. Remember, she had always thought that when they did adopt it would be a baby. Erika’s file eased many of Jeff’s concerns about adopting, but Tasha was out of her comfort zone. As she went to bed that night, she prayed to God that if adopting Erika was His will, He would give them a clear sign.
The next day a package arrived from China. FROM THE VERY CITY IN WHICH ERIKA LIVES. This is not a well known city. The package was a birthday gift, ordered for Jeff and Tasha’s youngest child’s birthday. Ordered by Jeff’s parents who live in Arizona. A dress. That gift had been ordered while Erika’s file lay in a closed drawer. Tasha knew, beyond any doubt. It took Jeff another 2 weeks, but he agreed. Erika was to be Norah, daughter of Jeff and Tasha, sister of Isaiah, Quinn, Emmett and Josie. God had chosen this child for them.
9/1/15— HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at norahmakes5.wordpress.com
Jim and Dawn met in 2003, fell in love and married in 2005. They instantly became a blended family with 4 boys and 3 girls. James started his own business and Dawn was working in healthcare. Life seemed to be moving along as expected for their family.
After 4 years of marriage they found out they were expecting. Although it was not planned they embraced the pregnancy and were excited to be having a child together. Sadly a week after seeing their baby’s heartbeat for the first time a miscarriage occurred and they lost the baby at just 10 weeks. Jim and Dawn were heartbroken but decided they would try for another and put it in God’s hands.
In 2011 Dawn gave birth to a beautiful baby boy who happened to have Down syndrome. Because it was a birth diagnosis they had no idea what they should expect but it did not take them long to see he would become one of the biggest blessings in their lives. There would be worry and challenges but the love and joy he brought to their lives outweighed any of that. At 7 months old Rylan had open heart surgery to correct a heart defect he was born with. The surgery was successful and Rylan is now a busy 4 year old that continues to bless their family.
Rylan’s diagnosis opened up a new world to their family. Dawn joined some online groups in support of Down syndrome. One group she was led to was Reece’s Rainbow. She followed the children and the stories for over a year when it was apparent in her heart that she wanted to adopt a child with Down syndrome.
Jim and Dawn prepared their hearts for the journey of adoption and for God to lead them to the right child. One day a video was posted of a little boy listed as Joseph on Reece’s Rainbow. After seeing Joseph’s video he never left their mind. They knew he was the one they had prayed for. They are now loving Joseph from afar and pray they will soon have him home and in their arms to love.
The Kozak’s are so excited to welcome this precious little boy into their family and ask for prayers and support as they begin their journey!
8/31/15—HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
Steve and Trisa along with their four daughters are eagerly anticipating the adoption of these four brothers in Eastern Europe. “I saw the pictures of Luke and Jason and knew they were supposed to be a part of our family. Then to our surprise and delight found out that they have two older brothers! Caleb and Tyler both with cognitive delays.”
Steve and Trisa believe God has allowed them this amazing opportunity and are believing that He will provide as the expenses for adopting four children at once will be great.
They are currently working hard to get all the paperwork and Home study complete and are hoping for a travel date in the next 6-9 months.
8/28/15—HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
In life there are numerous things we miss because we are not willing to step out and be obedient. Fear sets in and we just become frozen in that fear. Greg and Kim Franks are no different in those fears, but the couple press forward in the clear call God has placed upon their lives. Ahead to what? Another adoption. Without a doubt, they both knew when they saw little Hava Rose’s face (aka Lila), that they had stared straight into the face of their child.
Throughout each of their adoptions, many have questioned why they were adopting again. With two healthy older biological children and 20 years serving in the U.S. Army, one might ask why now… but they both would consider it disobedience to their Lord if they did not go. Greg and Kim echo a good friend who said, “Obedience looks similar to insanity, and to some people it may be perceived as insanity… BUT… walk forward in insane obedience.” They continue to walk forward in insane obedience out of love.
Furthermore, the precious children within their home would not have been there without the calling. From two dear biological children to four blessings from China, they both learned over and over again that God knows best. On each journey to China, their hearts became burdened more and more each time. As David Platt has said, “Orphans are easier to ignore before you know their names. They are easier to ignore before you see their faces. It is easier to pretend they’re not real before you hold them in your arms. But once you do, everything changes.”
As they have looked back over the adoption journey, they have seen how God has stretched them and they have opened themselves up to whatever the Lord has – no matter what. Humbled and amazed, the couple saw over and over undeniable evidence that God was pointing straight to Hava Rose (Lila). Out of all of God’s promptings, Greg and Kim reflected back to one that they would like to share.
Through a mutual friend Kim was connected with another China adoption mom, Sarah. She and her husband had adopted a child with Down’s Syndrome. She gave Kim all sorts of information and encouragement. Three weeks went by, and the Franks had already moved forward to adopt this little gem when Sarah contacted Kim to ask if they had made a decision regarding the adoption. Kim quickly answered yes. Sarah began questioning what orphanage the child was from and when Kim told her she was thrilled to learn that her daughter and Kim’s future daughter were from the same orphanage. Soon, Sarah connected Kim with a mission group that goes to the orphanage on mission trips to love on and serve these dear children. Through their conversation, Sarah and Kim discovered that Sarah sponsored a child there. Guess who that child was?
YES! Sarah and her husband were the sponsors for little Hava.
When things get overwhelming and fear sets in, Greg and Kim go back to the numerous ways the LORD has pointed them straight to their little Hava Rose, who is across the world, waiting for them in China. She is chosen and dearly loved. They are beside themselves with excitement to get her home as quickly as possible. They would be blessed to have others join in to help bring this precious little girl home. Greg and Kim have requested, first and foremost, for others to pray for this adoption and if one feels led, to help with the costs of bringing Hava (aka Lila) home.
Resting in this verse, they know that God walks with them at each step: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9).
8/27/15— HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at kimfranks.blogspot.com
Brian and Lora have been married for almost 25 years. They have three children at home, including two that are adopted, one domestically, and one internationally. They decided to continue building their family by adopting from the special needs program in China. They fell in love with “Eden” after seeing her sweet smile and bright eyes on their agency’s waiting list. She has hydrocephalus, and has had surgery to add a shunt to help her condition. Just a few weeks after connecting with “Eden,” Brian and Lora saw “Wyatt’s” picture on their agency’s page, and once again fell in love! They had not planned on adopting two at this time, but his sweet face stole their hearts. “Wyatt” also has hydrocephalus, although it has not yet been treated. Brian and Lora have already seen so many miracles and answers to prayer since beginning the process of adopting these two beautiful children!
As a true testament to our living God, the DeGan family has been called to adopt and expand their family in a way they never imagined! Bill and Amanda have raised two biological children of their own – Ryen and Hannah and Bill has two children from a previous marriage – Brittany and Jason. All of the kids are either grown and married or in college and they felt they were all settled into the ‘empty nest’ routine when God placed a very special young boy on their heart – Peter. He was brought to them through a search on the Reece’s Rainbow website and an immediate connection was placed on Amanda’s heart when she saw his photo. The Holy Spirit said “why not you?”
After many weeks of prayer and leading, Amanda showed a photo of Peter to Bill and he immediately said – “yes, we should do this”. She then contacted the team at Reece’s Rainbow and was told that another family was “very interested in adding Peter to their adoption”. Amanda was crushed – sure they had missed God’s calling and opportunity for their lives to expand and grow in love for this little boy. After telling the team, that they were still interested should the other family choose another direction, Bill and Amanda prayed on the path they felt God was leading them down. In God’s infinite grace and power, the next morning an email arrived saying the other family wasn’t going to be able to adopt him and gave Bill and Amanda their blessing!
Thus began the process of gathering documents and seeing if they would even qualify through the home study process to bring Peter into their home. God has been faithful and generous in all His dealings and the family is blessed through this entire experience. The family so admires those who have gone before them and those who are now working through the adoption process – to expand their home and take children who often are seen as ‘the least of these’ out of a terrible environment and into a loving family.
They ask for your prayers as they respond to God’s direction in their lives and hope that you will support them in this wonderful journey!
What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
8/26/15—HOMESTUDY in PROCESS